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Common practises for speeding up your website.

Website loading speed is a sensitive topic for a lot of website owners. Faster loading websites are ranked higher than their slower counterparts in search engines. Experience has proven that they also keep the attention of visitors for a more extended period, thus reducing the bounce rate on the site. 

A wide misconception of this complicated metric(website speed) is often mistakenly accepted to be entirely reliant on the web hosting server. While it is essential to have a web hosting server designed to provide speed and performance, creating a site that has optimized code, content, and structure is far more beneficial. 

Both these criteria are interconnected and bolster each other for an excellent performance overall. In this article, we will explore the standard practices of speeding up your website on an application level, rather than on a server level. 

We at HostArmada have made sure that the environment we have built contains all the essential components a website could need to perform at its best. 

General reasons for having a slow-performing website

Here are some of the most common reasons why you may experience a slow website:

  • The media content on the page showing slow-loading results is not optimized. By optimized, we mean not scaled to the proper dimensions in which the webserver will deliver it to your browser in the fastest possible way. A vivid example of this is using the same un-resized large images as a thumbnail when you can resize it to fit the correct size, receiving better performance in return.
  • You have a lot of external content on your websites - such as external JavaScript libraries, various fonts, and resources. This content is something that our web server does not serve to your browser, therefore, it cannot benefit from our speed increasing features.
  • Your website's database is spawning slow queries that are triggered by the various modules or plugins you have added to your site. Stacking multiple slow queries will result in additional technical time needed for their execution, which will naturally slow down your website. You should be careful when adding more functionalities to your application and make sure they are originating from a reliable source.

Of course, there are a lot more reasons why you could be experiencing slow loading speed. The above bullet points only highlight the universal problems and should give you an idea of the direction you should look to solve them. 

That's terrific information to have! What can I do to fix these and speed up my site?

Please follow these guidelines when optimizing your website. In a lot of cases, you will see great results if they are performed correctly:

  • Go over all of the media content on your websites, such as videos, images, and pictures. Reduce their size to the smallest possible dimensions that do not compromise their quality.  
  • Find the origin of the entire external content on your website, along with the functionality which added it there. See if there is a way you can remove them as long as it is not essential to your site or figure out if there is a way to lower the speed in which it is being loaded on your app.
  • Do not use poorly optimized themes or visual implementations for your website. Please only download or purchase them from an established and trustworthy source. You should do extensive research on everything you plan on purchasing beforehand. Having an inadequately optimized theme for the site will cause a lot of headaches and will put you at a financial loss because you will most likely have to hire a web developer to re-build it.
  • Go over all of the functionalities on your website and see if you are actively utilizing them. The ones that rarely see usage should be removed, as keeping things as simple as possible is the best thing you can do in terms of speed.
  • Utilize an application-level caching functionality. Most open-source applications have a module or a plugin, which activates static-content caching on the site. This cache can be an immense speed-up tool as long as it is configured correctly. Our Speed Reaper web hosting plan is armed with a powerful web accelerator - LiteSpeed. It provides a server-level cache for static resources amongst other benefits that we will not discuss in this article. In addition to that, this lightning-fast web server also has a powerful fully-integrated caching plugin for the majority of the open-source applications. Our technical support team will be more than happy to set up this plugin for your website, FREE of charge. All you need to do is submit a support ticket from your HostArmada Client Area. The rest of our packages do not support the LiteSpeed technology, however, to utilize a different caching plugin which you are unable to install or configure - we will handle this for you again, completely FREE of charge. Should you purchase our VPS or Dedicated Server plans, you have the option to speed it up by implementing LiteSpeed at an additional cost. If this is a point of interest to you, please contact our sales department over the live chat to receive a quote.

Note that these are general guidelines and not complete solutions for speeding up websites. Following them will surely show results in speed-testing your site in tools such as Gtmetrix or Pingdom, but if you want to fine-tune the site, polishing every aspect perfectly, employing a professional web developer is the best thing you can do. We have a great article that you can follow, explaining what you should look for in a developer before hiring him.

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